Only two areas in Southend saw coronavirus infections increase in the past week, according to new figures show.

The latest data published by the Government for the seven days to September 15 show there were 419 new cases in the borough – meaning the infection rate is 229 cases per 100,000 people.

That was down from 539 the week before.

But while rates are falling in most neighbourhoods, both Great Wakering and Foulness, and Belfairs saw cases increase in the latest weekly period.

Great Wakering and Foulness recorded 47 new cases and has the highest infection rate in Essex at 595.

There were 28 new cases in Belfairs meanwhile which has an infection rate of 289.7.

Areas which have seen the biggest fall in cases include:

  • Thorpe Bay – 15 new cases

Down from 36

  • Victoria – 15 new cases

Down from 25

  • Chalkwell – 27 new cases

Down from 39

  • Southchurch – 21 new cases

Down from 34

  • Leigh – 25 new cases

Down from 34

It comes as the Covid death toll in the UK has reached 160,000.

The total was passed on September 7, but has only now been confirmed due to the time it takes for deaths to be registered.

The figures, which have been published by the Office for National Statistics (ONS), show that 160,374 deaths involving coronavirus have occurred in the UK since the pandemic began.

This includes all deaths where Covid-19 was mentioned on the death certificate, including suspected cases.

The ONS figures provide the fullest picture so far of how the Covid-19 pandemic has unfolded in the UK.

They are a more comprehensive measure of deaths than the numbers published daily by the Government, which count only those who died within 28 days of testing positive for coronavirus, and which currently stands at a total of 135,252.

Analysis of the figures by the PA news agency shows how the number of deaths has slowed dramatically since the spring, despite the increase in new cases of Covid-19 in recent months.

The cumulative total passed 100,000 on January 6 and reached 125,000 just 20 days later on January 26.

It took a further 42 days to reach 150,000 on March 9.

But it then took nearly six months to reach 160,000 on September 7.

There were 57,896 deaths during the first wave of the virus (to August 31 2020) and 95,799 in the second wave (September 1 2020 to May 16 2021).

Since May 17 – the start of the third wave – 6,679 deaths have taken place.

The ONS figures run up to September 10, and are likely to be revised upwards as more deaths are registered.